I promised that reader I'd write an article about it, so here it is. Today, we'll see some Photoshop tricks on how to make some very fine selections. In other words, how to use the selection tools and filters available to select hair, fur, foliage, and other difficult items. Usually the purpose of such actions is to extract (or substitute) a background, but in some cases there might be some other reasons too, like applying a filter on a person's hair, etc.
Let's be upfront about this:
There is no easy, fast, one-fits-all solution.In other words, different images will require different approaches. Some images will be easier than others. More importantly: very often, the quality of the selection will be directly proportional to the amount of work you're willing to put. If you only have 5 minutes to spare, don't expect miracles. If, conversely, you have the patience to work on an image "until it's good", I can offer you some ideas and choices that can make the difference between 1 hour of work and 5 hours of work. Remember that a digital image, when opened on Photoshop, is nothing but a collection of pixels - lots and lots of pixels. Theoretically (strictly theoretically!) you are able to reconstruct it from scratch, painting it pixel by pixel. Practically, nobody can or should do that. The whole point is to make our job easier with Photoshop, not harder.
|Isolating/selecting hair is one of the most difficult challenges in Photoshop|
So, with these in mind, let's begin!